Pro-Palestinian rallies held in Manchester and Liverpool

demonstrators carry banner describing the UK government as "complicit in genocide"
Protesters criticised the British government for not calling for an immediate ceasefire

Thousands of people have marched in Manchester and Liverpool calling for an end to Israel's attacks in Gaza.

Protesters carried a banner describing the UK government as "complicit in genocide" after 293 MPs voted against a call for a ceasefire.

Rallies have been held since war began on 7 October, after Hamas killed 1,200 people and captured more than 200 hostages in Israel.

Since then, more than 12,000 people are reported to have been killed in Gaza.

Demonstrators repeated calls for a ceasefire and an end to the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories.

thousands attend protest in Manchester
About 3,000 attended a march in Manchester

The Conservative government, along with Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, has called instead for "humanitarian pauses" which will allow safe passage of aid into Gaza.

On Wednesday, 56 Labour MPs rebelled against Sir Keir's stance in Parliament when they voted to call for an immediate ceasefire.

Eight of his frontbench team - including Greater Manchester MPs Afzal Khan and Yasmin Qureshi - resigned from their roles.

'Humanitarian disaster'

Robert Lizar, from Jewish Voice For Labour, told the BBC he hoped "all the MPs will listen again and change their minds and vote for ceasefire now".

"This is a humanitarian disaster and all the MPs should be demanding that our allies, particularly in Washington, tell Israel they've got to stop, there has to be a ceasefire.

"Let's release the hostages, release the prisoners in Israel and we have to make moves towards peace."

He said there had been "difficult conversations [within the Jewish community] because I think quite a lot, but not all, Jewish people feel an emotional attachment to Israel and they feel that's part of their identity".

However he added "a lot of Jewish people are highly critical of what Israel has been doing so we represent that voice".

One man told the BBC he was attending the Manchester protest for "humanitarian reasons", adding: "We cannot stand and watch what's happening."

A large number of police officers were present, with the marches appearing to be peaceful, according to BBC crews covering the protests.

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